One of the outlets that's done a great job in elevating their NFL coverage in recent years has been Rotoworld. They're my go to source on contract info any time I have a question about a player or year in question.
To top that off, their draft coverage has really developed into a worthwhile machine that should be on your radar, largely because of the work of Josh Norris.
Yesterday, he put out a new mock draft that's more aligned with the new CBA, since it's chock full of...TRAIDS! Let's take a look at the highlights:
- The first trade in the mock is Arizona moving up to 3rd overall to grab Central Michigan OT Eric Fisher. This seems awfully plausible. Arizona's a mile away at 7th overall, and filling left tackle has to be a huge priority for them sooner rather than later.
- From 5th to 9th, every pick involves a trade in Norris' mock. The Jets go to 5th from 9th to take Oregon OLB Dion Jordan; the Lions, the other party involved, end up with BYU DE Ezekiel Ansah just ahead of the double digit picks.
Miami slides up from 12th to take Cleveland's spot at 6 for Oklahoma OT Lane Johnson. Oakland holds Arizona's 7th pick now, taking Florida DT Sharrif Floyd. Most nauseating though is San Francisco moving all the way up from the 31st pick to 8th to grab West Virginia WR Tavon Austin...It'd be a soul crusher. San Fran certainly has the capital to pull this off, and Buffalo could well move back to sit on a QB of their choosing late in day one.
- The Rams lose out on two key offensive line options out of Alabama at 10 and 11 as Tennessee takes G Chance Warmack just before the Chargers grab RT D.J. Fluker, a definite option for the Rams with Rodger Saffold likely on the outs after this season.
- Fast forward to the Rams at 16, and the first pick goes to:
- WR, West Virginia
Vaccaro is more than a typical safety, he matches up very well against a variety of offensive playmakers near the line of scrimmage. Turn on the tape against Tavon Austin or bigger receiving targets, and Vaccaro utilizes a nice blend of quickness and technique to mirror his opposition.
It's a popular pick and for good reason. I'll let yall check out the mock and then discuss in the comments if you think this is the best route with the other safeties, plenty of wide receivers and UNC G Jonathan Cooper still available.
- Speaking of, Cooper heads to Dallas at 18. Boo.
- One of the big late risers has been Boise St. CB Jamar Taylor. Norris has him landing in Chicago at 20th. Keep an eye out to see if he has that last furlong sprint to push him into the top half of draft boards in these next two weeks.
- While he's likely off the Rams board if Vaccaro's the pick at 21, FIU S Jonathan Cyprien is gone at 21 here to Cincinnati. Keep that connection in mind if the Rams go WR or O-line at 16 hoping to take the top safety on their board at 22. The Bengals could bungle that bangle (sorry).
- Now eying the offensive side, Norris pushes the Rams at 22 to:
22.) Cordarrelle Patterson - WR, Tennessee
There have been reports of Patterson struggling on the whiteboard. He certainly didn’t struggle on the green field in 2012, however. There are areas of improvement, but Patterson is dynamic with the ball in his hands.
We've got an article coming up from Brandon Birkhead that shows you where I rank Patterson, so I'll wait until we get that out before ranting too heavily. That being said, the safety-WR combo is an easy one to justify. That being said, I'm becoming less and less convinced that's how things are going to go down.
- I think the back end of the 1st round is totally up in the air at this point. Even without trades (and Norris' latter third of his mock includes just one move of the Bills down to 31 to allow the Niners to take Austin), I think anything after the Rams pick as you get into the playoff teams is very very hard to mock right now. Without the trade, the Bills aren't sitting at 31 to take Syracuse QB Ryan Nassib, a very easy move to mock with former Syracuse coach Doug Marrone now the Buffalo HC.
It's a mock morning. Let's get into it.